We're willing to bet a state or municipal employee won't inspect a daycare with the same eye for detail as a worried parent. Just keep that in mind the next time you hear a daycare provider espouse the benefits of operating a licensed facility. In most states, any provider who cares for more than 12 children must be licensed. The granting of a license simply shows the provider's facility has met minimum standards for health, safety and teacher training.
Don't get us wrong, we're glad there's an overseeing regulatory agency intent on making sure all the outlets are safeguarded. But we won't be lulled into a false sense of security. Even licensed daycares can have danger zones: Child gates that aren't firmly attached, door hinges that pinch little fingers, burn hazards near the cooking stove. Even other children with a penchant for biting their best pals.